This song is about unconditional devotion to your mate, but according to its co-writer Randy Holland, it didn't start out that way. Holland says that he wrote the song after moving from Bartlesville, Oklahoma to Los Angeles, where he pursued a career in music. He was "giving it the best that he got," but things weren't working out for him in the city. He later changed the song to be about his wife, Jennifer, and their special bond.
Holland didn't have the connections to get the song recorded, but his friend Skip Scarborough, was a prominent R&B songwriter who had written the L.T.D. hit "Love Ballad
" and the Earth, Wind & Fire song "Can't Hide Love." Holland asked Scarborough to make any changes to the song he thought would help, and to shop it around.
Scarborough made some structural changes, produced a demo, and sent it to Elektra Records, hoping their artist Howard Hewett would record it. Also on that label was Anita Baker, who had lots of clout after her hugely successful 1986 album Rapture
Baker heard the song and asked to record it as long as she could make some changes to the lyric; she was engaged to be married, so she felt a deep connection with the song. Baker took it and added some detail at the beginning and had the tempo sped up, producing the peppier version. Her changes earned her a writing credit on the song, which she split with Holland and Scarborough.
The song became the first single and title track for her album.